25+ apps to make your everyday life easier

I haven’t heard of all these apps, but they sound interesting. So here’s a to-do for my weekend!

TED Blog

Favorite_appsAt our small, fast-moving nonprofit company, everyone does a couple of jobs — and productivity apps help us manage roles that shift between coding, writing/designing and running a full-scale conference twice a year. We asked the TED staff what apps they can’t live without. And beyond the classics—Instagram, Google Maps, Spotify, Uber, Seamless—we found some great apps that might help you too. (A star denotes that the app is free, or at least has a free version.)

 

For random life stuff…

Dark Sky
A weather app with startling accuracy, its interface tells you things like: “Light rain starting in 22 minutes.” It also shows you beautiful weather maps that let you play local-news weather expert. “It’s like a wizard,” says our CTO, Gavin Hall. “If this app were available in the 1600s, it would have been burned at the stake for witchcraft.”

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Mobile Users Prefer Browsers over Apps

For a variety of functions, users would rather browse

Although about a third of US mobile phone subscribers used a downloaded application in August, according to comScore, and app downloads have shown impressive growth, many mobile device users appear to think browsers offer the better user experience.

Mobile users polled by Keynote Systems for Adobe reported a preference for mobile browsers to access virtually all mobile content. Games, music and social media were the only categories in which users would rather use a downloaded app than browse the mobile web.

Their preference for mobile browsers extended to the retail category, with users showing a strong bias toward mobile browsers for accomplishing every mobile shopping task mentioned. Whether it was researching product and price info or sharing that information socially, mobile users would rather fire up a browser than a dedicated app.

These preferences may surprise mobile experts who consider apps to offer the best content and shopping experiences. And marketers may be frustrated as well; getting an app on a user’s home screen is a constant reminder of the brand, but it doesn’t make sense to offer an app users don’t want.

Consumers may simply be unimpressed by the mobile-optimized efforts they have seen so far. When the Adobe survey asked about a preference for using regular or mobile-optimized websites on their mobile device, they preferred regular sites in both the consumer products-shopping and media-entertainment categories. According to the report, this preference suggests “a low awareness of optimized experiences for the mobile web,” but users could also be frustrated with the limited functionality many mobile-optimized sites provide.

Copyright ©2010 eMarketer Inc. All Rights Reserved.

http://www.emarketer.com/Article.aspx?R=1008010

Mobile Content Soars Thanks to Device and Network Advances

A third screen that publishers and marketers cannot ignore

Mobile phones have become a staple of daily life, so much so that most consumers can hardly imagine going through the day without one by their side. The reliance on mobile devices for just about everything makes mobile a platform that content publishers and marketers cannot afford to ignore.

eMarketer predicts mobile content revenues will rise from less than $1.15 billion in 2009 to more than $3.53 billion in 2014, a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of nearly 20% over the period.

“The continuing advance of smart devices—including tablet-style computers, led by Apple’s iPad—and the growing ubiquity of mobile broadband networks mean that consumers have to make fewer compromises when it comes to the consumption of games, music and video,” said Noah Elkin, eMarketer senior analyst and author of the new report, “Mobile Content: Games, Music and Video Take to the Cloud.” “An improved user experience, and the ability to access an ever-expanding variety of content from the cloud, will attract many new mobile content consumers in the next five years.”

The fastest growth will come from mobile music, which starts from the smallest base and will move from a market focused on ringtones to one where mobile-broadband-enabled users pay to access full-length songs from the cloud.

Games are the most popular mobile activity in number of users, and there is a growing emphasis on monetizing such content through downloads and advertising, rather than shipping phones with games preinstalled.

The mobile video audience will increase threefold between 2009 and 2014, with the steady improvement of devices, the increase in mobile broadband availability and the emergence of viewing options outside the carrier networks. These factors will help boost revenue growth to a CAGR of more than 25% from 2009 to 2014.

“Platform integration is vital for the growth of mobile content,” said Elkin. “The decade ahead heralds a wholesale shift in the content consumption experience. Consumers will expect games, music and video to be available on demand or via subscription on TVs, mobile and PC. The content owners that will thrive in this digital ecosystem are the ones that understand the need to deliver seamlessly across every possible platform.”

Copyright ©2010 eMarketer Inc. All Rights Reserved.

http://www.emarketer.com/Article.aspx?R=1007899